Powell to O'Reilly: Republicans Have Moved 'Too Far to the Right'

Wednesday, 30 Jan 2013 03:27 AM

By Matthew Auerbach

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The Republican Party has moved “too far to the right” and has not recognized the “fundamental demographic changes that are taking place in this country,” former Secretary of State Colin Powell told Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly Tuesday night.
 
“I voted for the president twice because — first and foremost — I didn’t think that the economic plans put forward by the [Republican] campaign in 2008 or 2012 really were suited for the times we were in,” Powell told O’Reilly. “So I had an economic reason to do that.
 
“In the last seven years, I have been troubled by the right shift of the Republican Party — too far to the right — and I’ve said this on a number of occasions,” Powell said. “And so in 2008, I found that, as an American, the best choice for America at that time and continuing in 2012 was Senator Obama and now President Obama.”

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Powell said the GOP was out-of step on the crucial issues of education, immigration, and voting procedures concerning minorities. 
 
“I don’t think the party recognizes the fundamental demographic changes that are taking place in the country,” Powell said. “In one more generation, African-Americans, Asian Americans, and Latino-Hispanic Americans will be the majority of the country and we have to educate those youngsters for the positions of leadership that they are going to occupy.”
 
O’Reilly asked Powell whether he didn’t believe the GOP was making strides in recognizing changes in the American electorate. Powell said the party is not making adequate efforts.
 
“I don’t think it’s being done adequately,” Powell said. “We have to understand, if you want these people to come to the Republican side, you can’t have immigration policies that affect them in a negative way — you can’t have policies that try to make it harder for minorities to vote. 
 
“I think one of the most terrible things that happened in the past election season is when we had a number of states going out of their way claiming there was outright fraud — when there really wasn’t any fraud to be of concern to us — but we were doing things to make it more difficult for those people to vote — and what did that produce?” he asked. “It produced an outpouring of them who stood in line to vote.”

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Powell, however, was not without criticism of Obama’s first term.
 
“I think the president should have focused more on the economy,” Powell said.

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